How to Stay Calm When You’re Overloaded by Work

Once you enter midterm season, it doesn’t seem to end until the semester is over. I am at the point in the semester where I have nothing but assignments due back to back, and there are always brief moments where I just want to drop out of school. Although it can get extremely overwhelming, here are some tips to help stay calm so you can stop thinking about everything you have to do and start hustling.


1. If you want to cry, let it all out

Usually when I feel as if there is too much on my plate, my first instinct is to burst into tears and be completely unproductive. I give myself up to 10 minutes to let it all out and begin to compile all my thoughts because in the end, if you’re not spending time working, nothing is going to get done.

2. Organize your deadlines

This takes a lot of time and patience, which can feel as if it is an inefficient use of time. However, by spending time organizing your deadlines, you can help to set enough time to complete all your tasks without missing the due dates. A trick I like to do is lay down everything due for the next 2 weeks and set up daily to-do lists to make sure I have enough time to complete all my assignments and still study.  

3. Remember to eat and drink water

With the amount of studying I need to get done, I sometimes forget a meal or to drink water, and by the time it hits 4 o’clock, my body feels as if it is disintegrating. Set aside at least 30 minutes to an hour for every meal to make sure you are eating properly. If you know you have a particularily busy week, consider meal prepping on the Sunday so you don’t have to spend as much time cooking or eat out constantly.

4. Take frequent breaks

I like to set aside time to catch up on my TV shows. I set it up as rewards system, so when I complete a significant portion of my task, I spend some time on Netflix to let my mind reset.

5. Hang out with friends

Always make sure you set aside time to actually interact with other human beings. I find hanging out with my friends a great way to maintain my sanity and also a way to have a lot of fun in the midst of school madness. I like to set aside Fridays as a day off, just so I can spend time with my friends. Although going out is super fun, it always good to remind yourself that being a student has to come first.

6. Treat yo’ self

Once I finish a major assignment or finish an exam, I like to treat myself to some ice cream. It’s a nice way to keep myself motivated and reward myself for the amount of work I put in.


7. Call home

Getting motherly advice is always nice when you’re feeling stressed. I like to talk to my mom whenever I’m stressed because she tells me everything I need to hear to get me back on track.


Although dreaded, all-nighters are unavoidable. It is a bad habit to continuously lose sleep to do assignments because, in the long run, they make you more unproductive. Sleep is the best way to manage stress, as you feel more capable to do work when you are well rested. With good time management, the amount of all-nighters can be extremely minimal.


Remember, your health should always come before school.